Why should you choose public transportation? You can choose public transportation to save money. You can choose it because you might not have a car or your car might be in the shop. Choosing public transportation can help save the environment by reducing the amount of carbon monoxide released into the air. Whether you are trying to save the environment or trying to save money, public transportation is a benefit to your city. Now, that you know the reasons to choose public transportation, let me tell you that you now have the choice in Rockdale County! The Blue Bus is here! The Blue Bus began as a dream of Alexander Fitzhugh when he noticed there were counties in which the MARTA system did not reach. He began in Clayton County in 2013 but soon after, MARTA came to Clayton County and there was no need for The Blue Bus anymore. He moved on to find another county with a need for public transportation and he found Rockdale County.
On Tuesday, December 5th, I decided to see what all this Blue Bus talk is about so I joined in on The Blue Bus Tour. My son and I drove over to 1400 Parker Road in Conyers, which will be the transfer point for The Blue Bus, and we met everyone in the parking lot. Alex Fitzhugh spoke about the different routes the busses would be taking and then we chose our bus! We chose the Downtown Rockdale/Conyers route but there are 3 different routes the bus takes. The three routes are:
– Route 1 – Downtown Rockdale-Conyers: Parker Place (Transfer Point), Rockdale County Jail, Lakeview Estates, Rockdale County DFCS, Conyers Municipal Court, Rockdale Govt. Complex, Rockdale Medical Center, Rockdale County High School, Walmart Supercenter, Conyers Crossroads Shopping Plaza, Kroger (Hwy 20) and back to Parker Place.
– Route 2 – Highway 138/Salem Road Route: Parker Place (Transfer Point) LA Fitness,Dept of Community Supervision, Apartments Cooridor (multiple apts), Eastside Drive Complex, Salem Square Plaza (Ingles), Salem High School, Target (Hwy 20), Publix Super Market (The Village), Kroger Supermarket and Parker Place (Beginning/End Point).
– Route 3 – Stonecrest Mall: Parker Place (Transfer Point), Corner Market Plaza, Johnson Park Recreation Center, Heritage High School, Publix Super Market (Smyrna Road), Lake St. James Apartments, Sams Club, Stonecrest Mall and back to Parker Place.
We hopped on our bus and fastened our seatbelts for this fun ride. We learned of all the benefits The Blue Bus will bring to our county from a well-equipped tour guide. After we drove the whole route, which took about an hour, we stopped at the Georgia Career Academy where they provide lunch for us. The whole trip was really a pleasant experience. The people who helped out with the tour exuded with a passion they have for this community. They care about making Rockdale county a delightful place to reside.
The prices for tickets are very much affordable. A one-way ticket is just $3, a round-trip ticket is $5, a ticket for the day is $10, a weekly ticket is $30 and a monthly ticket is $90. The busses will run on Monday through Friday from 5:30am-8:30pm. They will run on the weekends (Saturday/Sunday) from 8:00am-6:00pm. For those who need wheelchair access, 90% of the busses are accessible. The Blue Bus will also pass every high school in Rockdale County, which will provide students with a safe way to get around for jobs, entertainment and shopping.
The Blue Bus is partnering with the ride-share app, Going a2b. This will take care of transportation that is by rider request. Transportation that is directed based on the riders request. If you need a ride to work from your house, you can go on the mobile app and schedule this trip. There are different places where you can purchase a ticket. Currently, those locations are; The Blue Bus online store, LA Fitness (Conyers Location), Georgia Career Academy and Bella Vista #2. If you would like to be a partner and sell tickets at your place of business, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 470-333-8959. The Blue Bus would greatly appreciate your support.
Alexander Fitzhugh wants everyone to know that this is a community effort. This is something that has huge potential for this community and we all need to work together to help it grow. This project comes from a place of passion to provide transportation for those who need it. Alexander says, “We call our selves a community bus because we work within the community to hire people from the community, so your neighbors and friends, and sometimes family are the faces that you see driving the buses.” He says the people in the community are the ones who know this place best and they are familiar with how to get people around.
As I previously said, my 3 year old son did come with me because these busses have seats for children so bring your children along. These busses are family friendly so pack up the kids and save some money on gas while you do your shopping! If you would like more information about The Blue Bus, you can go to the website, www.catchthebluebus.com.
We want to say thank you to Alexander Fitzhugh for bringing this to our community!